Saturday, October 18, 2008

Stupid White Pride

here’s Fairfield, Ohio, resident Mike Lunsford’s idea of Halloween decorations — a ghost bearing an upside down Obama sign and the name “Hussain” (again with the misspelling) spraypainted on the “chest” hanging by the neck from a tree right above his McCain-Palin sign.

Lunsford told Channel 12 that his display is not political — it’s racist — and that

his views could hurt his employer’s business … but he says make no mistake: He doesn’t want an African American running the country. Lunsford says he believes Barack Obama is not a “full blooded American.” And he says the United States is a white, Christian nation — and only with white Christians should be in power.

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Mike Lunsford is likely to be entertaining Secret Service agents. Large, Unamused Secret Service Agents.

Their view of "protected speech" that might tend to endanger their assigned protectee and their personal safety is no doubt jaundiced.

For myself, it's people like this that have made me reconsider my views toward "hate speech" legislation, as a civilized alternate to "The Fighting Words Doctrine."

Practical Home Defense

clipped from
Funny Bedroom Table

Designed with security-conscious Londoners in mind, the Self-Defense Table provides a way to defend yourself and fight back if you are ever confronted in your home. The tabletop becomes a shield, and the support becomes a bludgeoning object. If you have to have a self-defense weapon in your home, this table seems like a safe and functional choice.

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Of course, for the US market, you might want to add a few layers of kevlar...

Myth. Busted

"ACORN Voting Fraud" Doesn't Exist -- But That Fact Won't Keep the Wingnuts From Claiming Otherwise...

read more | digg story

What, Never? Well, Hardly Ever...

clipped from

After being asked a question about keeping Obama supporters from also voting for Democrats down the ticket at a press conference in D.C., Rep. Tom Davis (R-VA), a former chair of the National Republican Congressional Commitee (NRCC) said: "Well you're talking about voter suppression and we would never, ever do anything along that line, for the record."

The room broke into laughter during his comment! (video 1:14 mins)...

Ari at the Oxdown Gazette covered it also and notes that nearly one-quarter of John McCain's laughably and insultingly named "Honest and Open Election Committee," "chaired by Warren Rudman and John Danforth, has been involved in GOP voter suppression efforts or unfounded partisan claims of voter fraud. Of the 21 members of the committee, five have been engaging in these shady efforts."

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"O" my stars and garters.

Obama in front of Ohio State FlagsWhat Bob Grant Saw

On the October 15 broadcast of his nationally syndicated radio show, Bob Grant said: "[W]hat is that flag that Obama's been standing in front of that looks like an American flag, but instead of having the field of 50 stars representing the 50 states, there's a circle?" He then said: "Is the circle the 'O' for Obama? Is that what it is?" Grant later said: "[D]id you notice Obama is not content with just having several American flags, plain old American flags with the 50 states represented by 50 stars? He has the 'O' flag. And that's what that 'O' is. That's what that 'O' is. Just like he did with the plane he was using. He had the flag painted over, and the 'O' for Obama. Now, these are symptom -- these things are symptomatic of a person who would like to be a potentate -- a dictator." '

The Big O Flag MugGrant did not further elaborate on what he meant by the " 'O' flag." However, conservative blogger Michelle Malkin stated on October 13 that she had "received several e-mails today from readers complaining about Barack Obama's backdrop in Toledo today. Apparently, some talk show hosts have also gone ballistic over what they think is an 'Obama flag.' " But, as Malkin noted, the flag appearing behind Obama during his October 13 speech was actually the Ohio state flag.

Mustang Bobby of Shakesville demands a T-Shirt by saying "We now have a new standard for "too dumb to play dead in a cowboy movie."

Media Matters has the transcript, which shows that he's not so dumb that he doesn't know enough to cover his ass. But to me, labeling this as "conjecture" when a simple fact-check would reveal the truth is absolutely in the realm of blatant, convenient, willful ignorance.

Hey, I could be wrong. But I wouldn't say this on this great radio station [WABC] if I didn't think there was some merit in this conjecture. And I stress conjecture. And so much of what we talk about is conjecture, is theory, is opinion based on intuition, based on some facts, based on some history.
As they say on wikipedia - "citation needed"

In that spirit, I propose inaugurating a new award for "Infotainment Professionals."

And the first award for "lifetime achievement" must of course go to Bob Grant himself.

The Big O Flag Mug by webcarve

As for the T-Shirt....

Friday, October 17, 2008

Obama for the cause of Law and Order

Auburn McCanta: Arizona Officer Supports Obama for the cause of Law and Order:

"We don't discuss politics at work," Lt. Cable explains. "It's paramount for police officers to maintain an aura of neutrality, which means discussions of politics are off-limits. Even in our private lives, we keep our politics close to the vest. Every police officer's primary function is to maintain or reestablish the status quo during any given situation. That's our role. As cops, we hold and preserve a conservative stance in dealing with the public because it serves to settle things. Even our private lives, we're a pretty conservative bunch. By default, then, most cops are conservative by nature and practice. Like the military, we pretty much tend to vote Republican."

But he's going to vote - conservatively - for Obama. He has several compelling reasons; I'm going to pick just this one. (You really need to read the article itself. )

Lt. Cable discussed the way each campaign has conducted itself from a standpoint of crowd control. To him, the Obama rallies seem organized and enthusiastic, but nevertheless, respectful. From a police view, there's vigilance for the occasional rabble-rouser, but there's not chaos or disruption. Detractors are tolerated, yet carefully monitored and controlled.

On the other hand, the McCain and Palin gatherings "seem to be trouble from the start." As the good Lieutenant puts it, "I'm responsible for my officers in the field. I believe policy is set at the top, so if I allow an anything-goes atmosphere, my officers are going to be confused. If, however, I set an example of proper conduct, everyone below me will know what's expected. What I hear from McCain and Palin is mean-spirited confusion and that translates to the crowd in those explosive responses we've heard like, 'terrorist' and 'kill him.' From a police viewpoint, that's a crowd control nightmare. You've got to wonder what McCain ... as a military man ... is thinking and why he would allow that kind of atmosphere."

"These guys are playing the ultimate 'bad cop' and it makes life miserable for those of us who are responsible then to clean up their mess."

This nutshells my own gut reaction, a reaction I've had since dubya got put into office. He and his sort are cocksure and contemptuous of actual common sense conservative values, such as expressed above. Here's a few more I live by.

"If it ain't broke, don't fix it."

"Don't make a mess if you aren't willing to clean it up."

"Don't be a bully; nobody respects bullies."

"To complain is to volunteer."

"Be the neighbor you want to live next to."

"If you had to cheat, you didn't win."

"The 'easy way' isn't."

Now, being as I am now in Canada, the exercise is moot for me. I'm done with this; I've suffered through two stolen elections and a tidal wave of arrogance, stupidity and lies that is being passed off as a "cultural revolution" and "conservative leadership." Four words with not a lick of substantive reality to them.

I stopped calling myself a Christian a long time ago, not because I left the church, but because the church left me. And now, the same people have taken the Union and done what they did to a properly conservative Christianity - replaced substance with selected dogmas that mandate the most unpatriotic and antisocial behavior in the name of patriotism.

Well, Mah fellow Umurikins - I'm done. I'm Canadian. I'm a dual citizen, but I was born on this side of the line, and all my life-experience tells me that only a damn fool would choose to put up with such crap as trickles down upon the average US citizen, and what level of damn-fool ignorance is required to think that what trickles down hasn't passed through corporate kidneys first.

As a Canadian and as a small-c conservative in the Canadian sense of the word, I need not add conditional clauses. There is no "I'm Canadian, but..."

Obama is not merely the only rational choice, he's actually the conservative choice, because he's in favor of conserving the things that the vast majority of US citizens need conserved - their homes, their jobs, their well-being, their piece of mind and the lives and mental health of their daughters, sons, cousins and spouses in the armed forces.

To believe otherwise, in fact, to even confuse Obama with someone espousing anything resembling genuine Liberalism, requires that you believe all kinds of damn fool things about what "liberals" really want to do.

Just visit digg or any other such site to see what I mean.

Elephant Shit and other Organic Wastes.

Brew Solar Ethanol Sticker bumpersticker

"Liberals," I'm widely informed by the "Drill, Baby, Drill" crowd are responsible for gas being the price it is.

No blood for oil! Bush, Cheney and Haliburton are evil!

You’ve seen the signs and heard all the protests blaming blaming Bush, Cheney, evil oil companies and Republicans for high gas prices but the real cause of rising gas prices and the faltering U.S. economy are liberals. Liberal agenda’s against refineries, oil exploration and drilling and Democratic votes in congress have taken America out of the oil production business and put it in the oil brokerage business.

Oh, he points out some valid things. Actually presents some real facts. And they are important facts to know:

John Lowe, Executive Vice President of Conoco/Phillips:
Access to resources is severely restricted in the United States and abroad, and the American oil industry must compete with national oil companies who are often much larger and have the support of their governments. We can only compete directly for 7 percent of the world’s available reserves while about 75 percent is completely controlled by national oil companies and is not accessible.
Stephen Simon Senior Vice President -Exxon Mobil
With respect to petroleum reserves, we rank 14th. Government-owned national oil companies dominate the top spots. For an American company to succeed in this competitive landscape and go head to head with huge government-backed national oil companies, it needs financial strength and scale to execute massive complex energy projects requiring enormous long-term investments.
To simply maintain our current operations and make needed capital investments, Exxon Mobil spends nearly $1 billion each day.

A BILLION DOLLARS A DAY! That’s a chunk of change, but don’t be fooled by the phrase, “record profits.” It’s just flat out misleading.

The average price of gas last year was near $2.80. Approximately 58% percent of that was the direct cost of crude oil. 17% went to federal, state and local taxes, 4% represents oil company profits. That figure is relatively unchanged from the previous decade. The point is, if oil companies gave up half of their profits, that’s 50%, the price of a gallon of gas would drop about a 5 cents. If we lowered taxes by half, we could all be saving 23 cents a gallon. John McCains gas tax holiday would save you and me almost 50 cents a gallon. Obama might scoff at that as a gimmick, but my truck has a 23 gallon tank and that would save me about $11 ever fillup, which I have to do at least once or twice a week. That’s real money.

It is indeed. And that tax windfall would be merely unconscionable - if it wasn't offsetting the cost of a war for oil. Which makes it, well, more than slightly evil.

The logic presented above seems unassailable - if you assume that drilling for oil, transporting oil, fighting wars for oil and maintaining the vast oil refining infrastructure is the only cost-effective way of putting energy in one end and having comfort and civilization come out the other.

The oil companies and their pet Bushistas argue that that's both true and obvious - though of course we may need to add to our vast nuclear infrastructure as well to make up for shortfalls.

Those assertions are not just self-serving; they are a steaming pile of elephant shit.

If T. Boone Pickins says we can't drill our way out of this crisis, I for one believe him. I know his heart is in the right place for this discussion. It's right where he keeps his wallet.

If T. Boone Pickins thinks there is as much money to be made in wind and solar now as there once was in oil, I also tend to believe him. T. Boone got rich by being right about where to "drill" and what to drill for. He's saying drill for geothermal energy; harvest wind and solar, free up natural gas for transportation - including your precious jacked up 4x4s - and transition as quickly as possible over to renewable for future fuel needs. You can convert damn near any internal combustion engine to run on LNG and it's widely available. So, why NOT do it? Is LNG "pussy fuel?" Does not burning gas make you gay?

Here's another little home truth for ya.

"Liberals" don't want to give up their cars any more than you do. Not that I'm a "liberal," but I know a bunch. The only way you pry a liberal out of their car is by making it more of a pain in the ass to have one than not or easier to get around without one than with one. Period. Just check out a California traffic web cam. Most of those people will vote for Obama - if they don't get stuck in traffic.

Mass transit is a damn good thing to have - but it only goes where it goes.

More to the point, cars are part of our North American culture and a status symbol. Status is as or more important to Lefties as it is to Righties. Nor is that a entirely silly affectation.

In point of fact, when you have a certain place in society, you have to behave a certain way and do certain things in order to keep the job that gives you that status. Unavoidable. It just IS. And for people like T. Boone and Al Gore, it's actually not merely nice, but absolutely unavoidable to have big houses, limousines and personal jets. When your time is worth in excess of 2k an hour, it's not "Green" to drive an electric car and live in a yurt.

"The Green Way" to be a member of the liberal eliete is to pay for offsets in the most practical way - to help more people afford their own electric cars and yurts. But at the same time, that personal jet will run just fine on fuel refined from pork fat. Ask Mr. Richard Branson; filthy rich eliete liberal bastard. And your big o'l mansion can be just as comfortable and just as impressive using a tenth of the energy the average McMansion does. Over time, you can buy a lot of solid gold plumbing fixtures with the savings.

And there's no law from Nature, God or Congress that says you can't make plastics out of green feedstocks. It's not exactly cutting edge tech. Henry Ford was making steering wheels out of soybeans way back when.

Oil refineries are not built here because they are big, stinky, poisonous and potentially explosive as well as being childishly easy targets for terrorism. They aren't lovely places to work, either.

Frankly, bio-fuels are just a heck of a lot less dangerous to have around. Even the highly explosive ones; they might go bang, but the fallout ain't lethal. Nobody would let you refine petroleum in your back yard, much less applaud even the safest nuclear battery system, but bio fuels are about as problematic as a gas water heater. And that means a secure energy supply that cannot be destablized by one terrorist or a plain old hurricane.

Finally, green jobs present opportunities for job creation on the local level, particularly in the job-strapped Mid and southwest; where the wind, the solar and geothermal resources are and where there's lots of potential to combine bio-fuel harvests with sensible crop rotation standards.

Finally, I'm strongly minded in all this of what happened when tee-pee burners were banned in the pacific northwest. Oh, doom was predicted! The end of the forestry industry was at hand! What could be done with the sawdust if it could not be burned?

So what did we end up with? Pres-to Logs, pellet fuel, inexpensive charcoal briquettes; oriented strand board, engineered wood materials, wood dough and all the jobs and profits that come from them, which used to go up in smoke.

You know, real conservatives actually look at waste as a sin - metaphorically and sometimes quite literally.

Look up "Earthship" on the internet, do the math on making your own fuel from waste, look into sticking up a windmill or a solar array and start swapping canning recipes with the hippie commune in the next town over. And screw those compact flurescent lights - they are filled with mercury. Get LED lights - they use even less energy and last damn near forever.

Make your own fast food. Go yard-saling for good solid real things you can fix up instead of buying cheap plastic crap from China.

Use it up, wear it out, make it do. Learn to weld. Start USING those tools you get for Christmas every year to make things worth having.

"Appropriate Technology" does not mean settling for less! Generally it means better, often faster and certainly cheaper.

Energy independence IS freedom. Making a widely dispersed, reliable, diversified energy network IS conservative. You can whomp up a fuel still out of scrap you find at the dump and the BATF will hand you a free license and point you toward plans. Conversion is pretty cheap; with some cars these days, you don't even need to convert; ethanol, gas, methanol - whatever you put in it, the car figures it out and runs just fine.

And remember, every gallon you brew out of yard waste and food scraps is a gallon you didn't pay taxes on. And - jeez - your waste product is either animal feed or concentrated compost, instead of stuff you have to pay to have hauled away. Nor did you pay to have it transported to your car. So, you know, that fact alone can subsidize all KINDS of boy toys!

There's a guy I've heard about, has a luxury stretch Hummer running on bio diesel. All the air conditioning and all the electronic toys known to man run off solar power that comes from the roof.

Doesn't sound like a "sacrifice" to me.

If I had some land, I'd be looking toward growing a few head of cattle and a dense organic garden in a big plastic greenhouse, using the waste from both to reduce or cover fuel costs. It wouldn't just be subsistence - I'd make a ton of money, by not wasting money on buying energy I could have for free.

As for your 4x4 - well, do you have any idea what sort of low-end torque can come out of a diesel-electric system? And I don't mean the current ones, I mean an intelligently designed one with motors in the wheels, driven by high-density storage batteries and a high-efficiency, constant speed generator. Like a train engine.

It's a rugged and accessible technology; one that's potentially a lot easier and cheaper to maintain, service and repair. The batteries are here. Not yet cheap, but here, and if you don't mind big and heavy, you could build one now in your garage out of stock parts.

The interesting thing about electric vehicles - the acceleration on them can be neck snapping. Modern materials make it a lot easier to manage the battery weights and still keep a decent horsepower to weight ratio. We will be seeing Nascar performance from electrics within the decade, if sanity prevails and some good ol' boys stop bitching and get to tinkering.

We leave this shit to big energy, big government and big auto and we will be still paying through the nose and bitching about it twenty or thirty years from now.

So, shaddup - and head for the garage

Brew Solar Ethanol Sticker


make your own bumper stickers with

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

"Necessity is the mother of bipartisanship."

Sorry, Dad, I'm Voting for Obama - The Daily Beast

The son of William F. Buckley has decided—shock!—to vote for a Democrat.

Let me be the latest conservative/libertarian/whatever to leap onto the Barack Obama bandwagon. It’s a good thing my dear old mum and pup are no longer alive. They’d cut off my allowance.

Or would they? But let’s get that part out of the way. The only reason my vote would be of any interest to anyone is that my last name happens to be Buckley—a name I inherited. So in the event anyone notices or cares, the headline will be: “William F. Buckley’s Son Says He Is Pro-Obama.” I know, I know: It lacks the throw-weight of “Ron Reagan Jr. to Address Democratic Convention,” but it’ll have to do.

I am—drum roll, please, cue trumpets—making this announcement in the cyberpages of The Daily Beast (what joy to be writing for a publication so named!) rather than in the pages of National Review, where I write the back-page column. For a reason: My colleague, the superb and very dishy Kathleen Parker, recently wrote in National Review Online a column stating what John Cleese as Basil Fawlty would call “the bleeding obvious”: namely, that Sarah Palin is an embarrassment, and a dangerous one at that. She’s not exactly alone. New York Times columnist David Brooks, who began his career at NR, just called Governor Palin “a cancer on the Republican Party.”

In reaction to this, readers of the National Review demanded Buckley's head; proving once and for all that irony, historicity and a decent regard for those who have legitimately worked to earn the status of "arrogant elitist bastard" have long vanished from the Republican Party.

Christopher did the proper thing; offering his resignation in a gesture that, under such circumstances, is properly taken as both noble and properly symbolic. It was accepted by the editor with what one might refer to as "unseemly haste."

(As former editor of several minor print publications, I learned that columnists that could provoke such visceral outrage were pearls beyond price. This is an editorial decision that will go down in history as being akin to trading Gretzky to the LA Kings.)

In a subsequent article for what appears to be his new online digs, Buckley is much kinder than I would be to his former fellows:

I have been effectively fatwahed (is that how you spell it?) by the conservative movement, and the magazine that my father founded must now distance itself from me. But then, conservatives have always had a bit of trouble with the concept of diversity. The GOP likes to say it’s a big-tent. Looks more like a yurt to me.

While I regret this development, I am not in mourning, for I no longer have any clear idea what, exactly, the modern conservative movement stands for. Eight years of “conservative” government has brought us a doubled national debt, ruinous expansion of entitlement programs, bridges to nowhere, poster boy Jack Abramoff and an ill-premised, ill-waged war conducted by politicians of breathtaking arrogance. As a sideshow, it brought us a truly obscene attempt at federal intervention in the Terry Schiavo case.

So, to paraphrase a real conservative, Ronald Reagan: I haven’t left the Republican Party. It left me.
I can argue with only one thing in the statement above; the assertion that Reagan was a "Real Conservative." Indeed, I consider him to be the beginning of the end for real conservatism in US politics; a man adept at supplying simple answers suited for simple minds.

Sarah Palin is the final insult to those of us who consider ourselves conservative in the proper sense; a sense that can be summed up in that fine old Midwestern phrase; "Don't piss on my boots and tell me it's raining."

It's been "raining" since 1980 in America. I mean that in an hemispheric sense; it's time for real conservatives of all nations and languages of Columbia to hoist the black umbrella, shielding all below from the "trickle down" twaddle of Voodoo Viziers of the Reganite Rabble. For the fruits of a thing one pays for by taxes - government - should go to those who pay, rather than those who use it steal from and abuse those who have paid and will have to pay even more in the future.

Credit: Necessity is the mother of bipartisanship by webcarve


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